My weathered old ancient leather sofa. It’s a wonderfully comfortable item and I’m loath to replace it so I decided to look into extending its life with some simple techniques from those in the know and which I pass on to you lovely readers.



Like wood, leather is natural and so breathes and expands and contracts over time and no two hides will ever be the same so caring for them is varied, especially for the more obscure types out there (I have sat on a horse leather sofa which was lovely and a friend has an ostrich leather cushion). Leather is durable, timeless, comfortable and gets better with age in my opinion gaining a patina over time which can only serve to add to its character, and with these few

Tips you can rest assured that yours will outlive you to be enjoyed by your ungrateful kids.

  • Keep all leather furniture out of direct sunlight as this will fade the colours, even white. Bright sunlight will also age leather quicker not to mention give you an almighty shock when you leap on it on a summers day wearing just your Speedos.
  • Liquid spillages should not be rubbed with a tea-towel or cloth as this will make matters worse. Use absorbent paper kitchen towels and dab the area several times using fresh paper each time to lift fluid from not only the surface but any that has been absorbed.
  • There are several manufacturers of leather protection creams which should be applied when new (unless the retailer has already done so) and repeated 4-5 times each year. Use a wiping method rather than a rubbing one.
  • Always ask the retailer what kind of leather you have and purchase the proper care products and don’t just grab any generic supermarket brand as this could damage your furniture irreversibly.Most ‘regular’ leather sofa’s and chairs will be protected with some form of cream as mentioned above but there are exceptions to this for items covered in Suede, Aniline and Nubuck.
  •  And back cushions should be regularly turned and plumped to maintain their shape and comfort. And flatten creases to stop them becoming permanent.
  • If zips have been used in your suite, do not open them. They are to ease manufacture and not so you can change the covers.
  • Baby wipes make for a general all round cleaner for leather goods (not just furniture) and are cheap and non evasive. Get non-fragranced ones to avoid smelling faintly of infants and always remember to test your cleaning products on an unseen area before you apply to the more visual parts.
  • Pets and children chew leather. Give them something else to chew on as bite marks cannot be repaired!

Stick to these few simply do’s & don’ts and your leathery loveliness will feel and look beautiful for years to come. Unlike ancient Moroccan women flogging oil!